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Kyiv Under ‘Massive’ Russian Attack as Poland Readies Air Force

Volodymyr Tarasov/Getty Images
Volodymyr Tarasov/Getty Images

Russian air strikes pummeled western Ukraine and the capital Kyiv on Sunday, forcing its neighbor Poland to prepare its troops as fears of an expanding war grew.

Ukrainian officials said Russia struck before dawn in its second attack against the capital city in the last four days. Kyiv’s mayor, Vitali Klitschko, reported “explosions in the capital” on Telegram on Sunday, advising people to remain in shelter as the city’s air defense deployed.

The city of Lviv, which lies less than 50 miles from the Polish border, was also under attack, its mayor Andriy Sadovy said. Russian artillery “targeted critical infrastructures” with about 20 missiles and seven Iranian-made drones, Sadovy added.

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Polish Armed Forces Operational Command said its air force was active and standing by due to the “intensive long-range aviation activity of the Russian Federation tonight.”

It added that a Russian missile had temporarily breached Polish airspace for 39 seconds. “During the entire flight, it was observed by military radar systems,” Command said, adding that it would’ve been shot down if it appeared headed for a Polish target.

The increased assault on Kyiv and western Ukraine came in the wake of a deadly attack on a Moscow concert hall, which left at least 133 people dead. President Vladimir Putin pinned the blame on Ukraine, which denied any involvement. An affiliate of the extremist group ISIS took credit for the attack.

Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky accused Putin of using the attack as a pretext to step up hostilities with Ukraine.

“That low-life Putin, instead of dealing with his Russian citizens, addressing them, was silent for a full 24 hours, thinking about how to tie this to Ukraine,” Zelensky said on Saturday. “It’s all absolutely predictable.”

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